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Planned Giving

Concordia Connections

Wendy Ward '70 Tells Her Story

Wendy Ward '70

Wendy Ward '70

The cats were out. Concordia was in.

During an estate planning session, my lawyer was sympathetic but firm: Do not leave your annuity funds to your cats. It gets complicated. Find other beneficiaries instead.

But who could I name? I had no spouse or children to consider, and the cats had been summarily disinherited. Where could I direct any annuity money that might be available upon my death? I wanted my bequests to do some good, make a difference.

Concordia was one of the answers.

The college had provided me with an excellent education, wonderful friends, and valuable life experiences, as well as significant vocational connections. Furthermore, I was continually impressed by Concordia's academic, cultural, environmental and spiritual directions moving into the 21st century. All of this called for financial support.

Over the years I had received many fundraising phone calls and mailings from the college: Often I responded with a donation, but was embarrassed by how very modest the gifts were. I knew I was giving what I could afford on a single income as the pastor of small churches. But how nice it would be to give more!

I fantasized about a gigantic Publishers Clearinghouse Sweepstakes check showing up at my door, of writing a novel that rocketed to the top of the best seller list and was optioned by Hollywood, of arriving at Antiques Roadshow clutching a rummage sale find subsequently appraised as a six-figure treasure.

Not. However, a realistic opportunity to give more was presenting itself.

At one time I had compared my annuity earnings to my bank account and thought: "Wow! I'm worth more dead than alive."

A sobering and dismal thought then. Now I realized that as a bequest, this quietly accruing income had serious value. Maybe not enough to endow a scholarship and definitely not enough to have a building named after me, but enough to express enthusiasm for Concordia's future and gratitude for my life as a Cobber.

I don't know what amount will finally come to Concordia when I die. The bequest is as much about my belief in Concordia and its ideals and about stewardship of my limited resources put into the power of God's unfolding future. The bequest is made without conditions or reservations. Though I do hope that on my demise someone would give two elderly cats a good Concordia home…and not in the biology lab.

Soli Deo Gloria and let the seeds of possibility, however humble, be sown.

You Can Make a Difference
Contact Trina Hall at (218) 299-3445 or to sow your seed of possibility for the future of Concordia.

eBrochure Request Form

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A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to Concordia College a specific item, an amount of money, a gift contingent upon certain events or a percentage of your estate.

an individual or organization designated to receive benefits or funds under a will or other contract, such as an insurance policy, trust or retirement plan

"I give to Concordia College, a nonprofit corporation currently located at Moorhead, MN, or its successor thereto, ______________* [written amount or percentage of the estate or description of property] for its unrestricted use and purpose."

able to be changed or cancelled

A revocable living trust is set up during your lifetime and can be revoked at any time before death. They allow assets held in the trust to pass directly to beneficiaries without probate court proceedings and can also reduce federal estate taxes.

cannot be changed or cancelled

tax on gifts generally paid by the person making the gift rather than the recipient

the original value of an asset, such as stock, before its appreciation or depreciation

the growth in value of an asset like stock or real estate since the original purchase

the price a willing buyer and willing seller can agree on

The person receiving the gift annuity payments.

the part of an estate left after debts, taxes and specific bequests have been paid

a written and properly witnessed legal change to a will

the person named in a will to manage the estate, collect the property, pay any debt, and distribute property according to the will

A donor advised fund is an account that you set up but which is managed by a nonprofit organization. You contribute to the account, which grows tax-free. You can recommend how much (and how often) you want to distribute money from that fund to Concordia College or other charities. You cannot direct the gifts.

An endowed gift can create a new endowment or add to an existing endowment. The principal of the endowment is invested and a portion of the principal’s earnings are used each year to support our mission.

Tax on the growth in value of an asset—such as real estate or stock—since its original purchase.

Securities, real estate or any other property having a fair market value greater than its original purchase price.

Real estate can be a personal residence, vacation home, timeshare property, farm, commercial property or undeveloped land.

A charitable remainder trust provides you or other named individuals income each year for life or a period not exceeding 20 years from assets you give to the trust you create.

You give assets to a trust that pays our organization set payments for a number of years, which you choose. The longer the length of time, the better the potential tax savings to you. When the term is up, the remaining trust assets go to you, your family or other beneficiaries you select. This is an excellent way to transfer property to family members at a minimal cost.

You fund this type of trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. You can also make additional gifts; each one also qualifies for a tax deduction. The trust pays you, each year, a variable amount based on a fixed percentage of the fair market value of the trust assets. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to Concordia College as a lump sum.

You fund this trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. Each year the trust pays you or another named individual the same dollar amount you choose at the start. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to Concordia College as a lump sum.

A beneficiary designation clearly identifies how specific assets will be distributed after your death.

A charitable gift annuity involves a simple contract between you and Concordia College where you agree to make a gift to Concordia College and we, in return, agree to pay you (and someone else, if you choose) a fixed amount each year for the rest of your life.

Personal Estate Planning Kit Request Form

Please provide the following information to view the materials for planning your estate.